Monday 15 April 2019

Promoting Other Authors - The Creative Process


If you've been following me for a while, you'll be aware that I highlight an author on a Friday. Whether I have them for an interview, or a review of their book, or even a guest blog, it's something I've been doing for a good couple of years now. If you're interested in being one of those authors, the form is here.

But today I wanted to touch on something that I don't feel like enough people realise and that is: promoting other authors helps promote you as well. It's not all give and it's not all take. I've been involved with The Book Robin Hoods since it's creation. I know a lot of people through that site that have helped me find beta, my CP, and bloggers who will help with cover reveals and ARCs all year round. It's a valuable resource, and it's something I really do think you should check out. If you're a reader the form is here. Authors, the form is here.

But back to what I was saying, how does promoting other authors help to promote yourself? It's simple really. If you're the one shouting about this or that book, posting about it on your social media, writing a review and highlighting it, then you're getting a new audience who might look at your work and think they should check it out. This helps everyone from the small bitty indie to the huge traditionally published and it's something that so many people miss out on. They think that the only way to promote is by talking about their work and pushing that to the front of the auidence. And I'm not going to say I didn't make the same mistake because I did, but I've learned from it and hope that by telling you all this, you won't make that mistake.

Being a part of the writing community, whether that's purely online or in person or a mix of the two, is an amazing thing. I did a tag video about the writing community a few weeks ago on my Authortube channel (video here) and I have to say it's brought so many different people into my life. I always found the act of writing books to be pretty isolating, and it was really only when I startd to get serious about promoting myself and taking my work as a career that I realised that there are people out there who will help you. Sure there's those who will hinder, but let's not dwell on them today.

So how can you go about promoting other authors? If you're a blogger, you can have a certain day a week when you showcase other authors. I have a list of fourteen questions and ask that each author answer at least seven of them. I change them yearly and beyond that I've had some amazing people come through my pages and have found some amazing books. I've also have made so many different friends, all of whom are happy to help return the favour when it comes to my own promotion.

If you're on instagram, you can post pictures of books and do reviews that way. Again it could be that you set one day a week when you'll showcase another author's work. You can do the same on Youtube, where maybe once a month you do a round up of what you've read and talk about each author. Facebook can lead to things like group takeovers or sharing graphics, and twitter has a whole writing community tag that allows you to meet new people and choose what to share and when. There's just so many different ways to go about it and the people you meet are usually pretty damn amazing.

When you're out there as an author, hearing other people talking about your work is something that not much else can top. Recently I was told that I inspired two writer friends of mine as one of their top four female authors. Knowing that I make that kind of impact matters to me, and knowing that I can help promote other authors through my own audience matters too. There may be times when I feel like it's a lot like shouting into the void, but a lot of the time the void shouts back.

It's not just about getting to geek out about books I love, but about making connections, forging relationships and being a part of the writing community as a whole. Being an active part rather than someone who just sits, writes, publishes and watches from the sidelines. I don't talk about the side of me that's very introverted and anxious a lot, but when I first started doing the Friday posts, it was something that I battled with. I didn't want to say no to anyone, and nor did I want to give a bad review. Not just because it's not something I usually do - very few books disappoint me and I know I'm lucky in that regard - but also because I knew it would have a negative effect on my blog and what I was trying to do.

However, since then, I've learned to be more picky about who I showcase and what I read. I want to read all the books, but I get that not all of them are ones that will meet my very loose five star rating. And that's okay. Not every book is written for me. I am not every audience and liking something is more than a little subjective. So my one cautionary note to anyone worried about fallout should they do the wrong thing. You can meet the bad people, but the writing community is huge and mostly welcoming, stepping outside your comfort zone is hard, but it can be a big payoff. Take it easy, take your time, and know that you are not alone.

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